By Robert Schlesinger |
The Violence Against Women Act should be reauthorized as soon as possible. The issues that the act confronts, including domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking, are serious problems that benefit from this legislative effort to lessen their occurrence and help women to feel safer.
As a man, it's easier to forget about the intense and constant fear that many women have regarding abuse, because many of us aren't subject to that sort of treatment. Our comparative ignorance of this violence is regularly reaffirmed by religious and political extremists who claim that women bring assault onto themselves by the way they dress and how they act. Such misinformation is offensive and serves only to castigate victims and excuse their assailants. That's why it is so important that we take steps to reduce incidents of assault and raise public awareness through educational programs. As human beings and fellow Americans we must recognize that women have a right to be protected from gender based violence, regardless of our own gender.
The original passage of the Violence Against Women Act and its subsequent reauthorizations meant that our government formally acknowledged that domestic and sexual violence exists on a wide scale and causes tremendous harm to those involved. Such recognition is crucial to empowering victims of violence and absolutely essential to stopping future incidents from happening.
Congress has a duty to support bills like the Violence Against Women Act which protect our fellow citizens from violent aggressors and build supportive communities to assist those that have already been attacked. If we fail to come together on this issue our mothers, sisters, daughters, nieces, grandmothers, and granddaughters will be exposed to preventable terror and cruelty. No human being deserves that fate.
About Roy Speckhardt Executive Director of the American Humanist Association
Janice Shaw Crouse Author of 'Children at Risk' and 'Marriage Matters'
Laura Wood Writer at TheThinkingHousewife.com
Max Baucus U.S. Senator from Montana
John Cornyn U.S. Senator from Texas
Joseph R. Biden III Attorney General of Delaware